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Old 07-12-2016, 09:13 PM
 
Location: Omaha, NE
149 posts, read 131,695 times
Reputation: 286

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I often see lower cost of living as one of the selling points for Omaha, NE, but crunching the numbers I am just seeing how this pans out in reality.


Here in TX we are living in a $260k 2200 sq ft 4 year old house, property taxes are roughly $4500/year. We are in the oil field so wages here are still pretty good despite the recent and ongoing downturn in the price of oil. Houses in Omaha in the $220k range seem to carry the same sort of mortgage due to high property taxes but wages there seem to be 65-75% of what we see here, so at the end of it all cost of living actually seems HIGHER there and with the wage also taken into consideration it creats a pretty good sized discrepancy. Gas prices here are cheaper, there is no state income tax etc etc.


I really want to find a way to justify all of this but I am struggling with it from a balance sheet perspective. Am I missing something??
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Old 07-13-2016, 05:41 AM
 
Location: Nebraska
1,886 posts, read 2,303,645 times
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I'm not sure what the purpose of your post is. Earning potential has nothing to do with "cost of living".

Just in my area there are very decent homes for $125,000, so you don't have to pay 250K for house if you don't want to. The house that I used to live in was a 150K house on one acre and the property taxes were $1,100. It was 3300 sq ft and had a medium size barn with a garage inside.
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Old 07-13-2016, 08:56 AM
 
Location: Omaha, NE
149 posts, read 131,695 times
Reputation: 286
Garthur, I wasn't trying to be derogatory in any way so I hope that isn't how the post came across.

I have found 'cost of living' to be a greatly variable term and affordability in relation to median income is a lot more telling figure in my opinion. A 1 million dollar house seems less expensive if you're making 10 million dollars per year than a 200000 dollar house when you're making $100000/yr.

I do realize that there are cheaper options in housing than those in the 250k price range, right now I'm just trying to look at homes comparable to the one we are currently living in here to get a feel for what they sell for and what they cost on a monthly basis there. It SEEMS like newer houses are actually more expensive there. We've been looking at newer houses because places with 8' ceilings as is common in older housing everywhere just feels plain old claustrophobic sometimes.

That being said, there are a lot more options of a higher quality with older homes there as compared to here it seems like. I'm still juse trying to figure things there out is all.

Last edited by ahawes; 07-13-2016 at 09:45 AM..
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Old 07-13-2016, 11:47 AM
 
64 posts, read 70,168 times
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Do you mean "standard of living" instead of "cost of living"?
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Old 07-13-2016, 12:39 PM
 
Location: Omaha, NE
149 posts, read 131,695 times
Reputation: 286
I don't necessarily mean standard of living, I think that area provides a fine standard of living.

I guess to rephrase the question: When it's mentioned that Omaha has a low cost of living, this is compared to what/where? I am looking at moving from an area that is generally thought of as 'high cost of living' but am just not seeing where the COL is so much less expensive in Omaha.
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Old 07-13-2016, 06:33 PM
 
93 posts, read 68,369 times
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We moved from Omaha, to Fort Worth, tx and then back to Omaha.

Housing wise, we were better in tx. Our house cost less and was double the size compared to both of our Omaha homes. Property tax was slightly less but similar. Licensing the vehicles was less in Tx. No state income tax was nice too.

However, our standard of living is better here. I was able to find a job quickly and so was my husband. Our commutes are shorter (he drove 2 hours to work in tx. Now it's 20-25 minutes. My commute is 12 minutes). Things like groceries, gas, entertainment, etc are all less less expensive in Omaha. My kids' school is wonderful. We're thankful every day that we moved back though we do miss the neighborhood swimming pool we had in tx.

I don't necessarily think you're going to find a lower cost of living than tx. Though housing has gone up there, it is still more affordable than here from what I can tell.
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Old 07-13-2016, 07:01 PM
 
Location: Omaha, NE
149 posts, read 131,695 times
Reputation: 286
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katie1013 View Post
We moved from Omaha, to Fort Worth, tx and then back to Omaha.

Housing wise, we were better in tx. Our house cost less and was double the size compared to both of our Omaha homes. Property tax was slightly less but similar. Licensing the vehicles was less in Tx. No state income tax was nice too.

However, our standard of living is better here. I was able to find a job quickly and so was my husband. Our commutes are shorter (he drove 2 hours to work in tx. Now it's 20-25 minutes. My commute is 12 minutes). Things like groceries, gas, entertainment, etc are all less less expensive in Omaha. My kids' school is wonderful. We're thankful every day that we moved back though we do miss the neighborhood swimming pool we had in tx.

I don't necessarily think you're going to find a lower cost of living than tx. Though housing has gone up there, it is still more affordable than here from what I can tell.
I appreciate your reply and perspective. We are over in Midland so things are a good measure more expensive than most of DFW. I am hoping very much that we have the same results as you as far as the standard of living goes, I think Midland would be very easy to top in that regard though.


I guess items like groceries, gas, entertainment, etc. would have been a better way to have asked the question in the first place. Did you notice any kind of difference in things like home or car insurance, utilities etc.? I know most of these are relatively small expenses but when you add it all up it can be a large chunk.


Thank you in advance!
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Old 07-13-2016, 07:21 PM
 
Location: Omaha, NE
149 posts, read 131,695 times
Reputation: 286
Just looked into the vehicle registration part. Does it really cost around $1,000 to register a newish car per year???
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Old 07-14-2016, 07:15 AM
 
93 posts, read 68,369 times
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It depends on your car but $1000 sounds high. We pay less than that for both and our cars are fairly new.

Our utilities are significantly lower. But our house is smaller and we're not running the ac from March-October. I don't know about home insurance but I don't remember a big difference.
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Old 07-14-2016, 09:56 AM
 
12,888 posts, read 4,657,792 times
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Home insurance premiums, AC costs and toll roads are high in Texas. But they are never included in these cost of living rankings.
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